Using Holocaust Fiction in the Classroom – a resources list.

Many thanks to Susan Brownlie, who has put together this helpful resource document for those interested in following up on the Using Holocaust Fiction in the Classroom webinar presented by Dr Paula Cowan and Professor Henry Maitles, University of the West of Scotland, in association with SATE, on 19th of August, 2020. You can view the webinar here:

Resource List

 Webinar References: Academic Research and Pedagogical Guidance

  • Cowan, P. & Maitles, H. (2017) Understanding and Teaching Holocaust Education, London: Sage.
  • Doherty, R. (2019) Only half of adults know what antisemitism means, Jewish Chronicle, 15 March, p.1.
  • R. (2007) Boyne’s Dangerous Tale, Jewish Chronicle, 23 March, p.53
  • Eckmann,M.,  Stevick, D,  & Ambrosewicz-Jacobs, J.(2016) Research in Teaching and Learning about the Holocaust: A Dialogue Beyond Borders, Berlin: Metropol.
  • Holocaust Educational Trust Teaching Guides (Primary, English and Drama)

(contains a recommended reading list and useful guidance on The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas)

(contains a recommended reading list for different age groups and a copy of David Cesarani’s Literary Review article from 2008 on The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas)

  • IHRA (2016) Working Definition of Antisemitism,

  • Gilbert, R. (2010) Grasping the Unimaginable: Recent Holocaust Novels for Children by Morris Gleitzman and John Boyne, Children’s Literature in Education, 41:355-366.
  • Gray, M. (2014) The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas: A blessing or a curse for Holocaust Education? Holocaust Studies 20(3): 109-136
  • IHRA (2019) Recommendations for Teaching and Learning About the Holocaust

  • Kokkola, L. (2003) Representing the Holocaust in Children’s Literature. Routledge: London.
  • Lipstadt, D. (2019) Antisemitism: Here and Now, Melbourne and London: Scribe.
  • Majaro, N. (2014) Looking for Ideology in Children’s Fiction Regarding the Holocaust, New Review of Children’s Literature and Librarianship, 1:1-14.
  • C. (2014) Second Thoughts, Prism 6: 127.
  • Rich, J. & Pearcy, M. (2018) The Boy in the Striped Pajamas: Critical Analysis of a Film Depiction of the Holocaust, The Social Studies,109(6): 294-308.
  • Teo, H. (2015) History, the Holocaust and Children’s Historical Fiction, TEXT Special Issue 28,

  • UNESCO & OSCE (2018) Addressing Anti-Semitism Through Education: Guidelines for Policymakers, Paris: UNESCO, Warsaw: OSCE.

 Webinar References: fiction and non-fiction

  • Boyne, John (2006) The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, David Fickling Books.
  • Glatshteyn, Yankev (2007) Emil and Karl, Scholastic Children’s Books.
  • Gleitzman, Morris (2005) Once, Puffin Books (the Once series will comprise 7 novels, the final book, Always, will be published in 2021).
  • Morpurgo, Michael (2007) Waiting for Anya, Egmont Children’s Books.
  • Morpurgo, Michael (2007) The Mozart Question, Walker Books.
  • Palacio, RJ (2019) White Bird: A Graphic Novel, Penguin Random House.
  • Spiegelman, Art (2003) The Complete Maus, Penguin Books.


Additional Recommended Reads

  • Folman, Ari (2018) Anne Frank’s Diary: The Graphic Adaptation, Penguin Random House.
  • Fried, Hédi (2019) Questions I am asked about the Holocaust, Scribe Publications.
  • Palmer, Tom (2020) After the War: From Auschwitz to Ambleside, Barrington Stoke.
  • Rosen, Michael (2020) The Missing: The True Story of My Family in World War II, Walker Books.
  • Volavková, Hana, ed. (1993) … I never saw another butterfly … Children’s Drawings and Poems from Terezin Concentration Camp, 1942-1944, Schocken Books Inc.

Picture Books

  • Elvgren, Jennifer (2014) The Whispering Town, Kar-Ben Publishing.
  • Dauvillier, Loïc (2014) Hidden: A Child’s Story of the Holocaust, First Second.
  • Vander Zee, Ruth (2003) Erika’s Story, Creative Paperbacks.

University of the West of Scotland: School-based Holocaust Education in Scotland

  • Vision Schools Scotland

  • Level 11 Module in Citizenship and Holocaust Education



More news from NATE(S)

It’s been an interesting August for Scottish education, hasn’t it? With a furore over SQA results – happily now resolved by the government’s unusual decision to actually trust teachers’ judgments – and justifiable concerns about a full time return to school in the middle of a pandemic, there’s been a lot  to occupy our thoughts.

NATE(S) has been busy trying to support you.  We’ve held a number of webinars, all available on our SATE YouTube channel.  Google guru Tom Coles kicked off with a session on Blended Learning, and NATE(S) coordinator Raymond Soltysek followed that up with a webinar on techniques for teaching  RUAE. A panel discussion for probationers and NQTs featured Sharon Loder from the University of Strathclyde and Leanne Welsh, student mentor and author of the NQT Reflections blog, along with former probationers.

A session on Decolonising the Curriculum with Nav Govender from the University of Strathclyde and Mélina Valdelièvre of the Anti-Racist Educator collective provided some timely advice on how we can construct and deliver a curriculum that is truly anti-racist.  Follow the collective on their blog and on Twitter.

The SQA results situation prompted a high level panel discussion featuring Tom Coles, Raymond Soltysek, Mélina Valdelièvre and the legendary Kenny Pieper and Lindsey Duncan.  NATE(S) hopes to have an input at all levels of future discussions, and we will publish our response to the SQA consultative exercise shortly.

Our last webinar featured Susan Brownlie and Tom Coles in discussion with Paula Cowan and Henry Maitles of the University of the West of Scotland about the teaching of The Holocaust in the English classroom.  NATE(S) has visited this in the past (see our previous blog for reactions to an earlier session with The Holocaust Education Trust), and we’d recommend their advice on resources which are appropriate to use (and resources, such as The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, which are inappropriate to use!) when considering The Holocaust with your classes.  You’ll find some here and here.

Upcoming, we have a range of fascinating sessions planned, on alternatives to National and Higher courses, personal reading, the Scottish set texts and using Scots in the English classroom.  If you have any requests for sessions you’d like to see or you’d like to offer a session yourself, please get in touch at and we’ll have a chat.  Consider joining NATE, our parent organisation, which offers access to a plethora of resources and to the only magazine and research journal dedicated solely to teaching English in the UK.

In the meantime, stay safe, enjoy your time with your pupils and subscribe to our blog, YouTube channel and Twitter account to keep updated.

Ideas are like beards...

but not literally.

Viv Ellis

Education Academic

Professor Mark Priestley

Comment on topical issues relating to the school curriculum

Here is a sunrise...

...ain't that enough?

Teacher Who Writes

Teacher of young adults. NWP(UK) Glasgow branch leader. Writer.


the literature classroom through a cognitive lens

NATE (Scotland) blog

The National Association for the Teaching of English (Scotland)